Justice

In One Scene, "I Am Cait" Shut Down One of Its Biggest Criticisms

July 27th 2015

By:
Laura Donovan

Earlier this month, Caitlyn Jenner took a stand against bullying through the #Day1 campaign, a project from The Tyler Clementi Foundation, to promote a more tolerant world for today's youth. During the premiere of "I Am Cait," Jenner reiterated her intention to help young trans people. Toward the end of the episode, Jenner visited the home of Katharine Prescott, whose trans child, Kyler, committed suicide earlier this year.

"People are dying over this issue," Jenner said in the premiere of her show. "I have a tremendous responsibility because I have a voice and there are so many trans people who don't have a voice. I have that privilege status but I hope I'm in a position to turn around and help this community ... Suicide is a permanent solution to a very temporary problem and most of these people at risk are young kids. I've had some very dark moments. I've been in my house with a gun and said lets just end it right here. No more pain, no more struggle. That struggle, it's real."

On Sunday's premiere episode of "I Am Cait," Prescott pointed out that young kids aren't the only ones who bully trans teens. Adults are very much responsible, too. She wrote about this on a blog post for Jenner's website as well.

"People usually assume that the teasing is from other teenagers, but that wasn’t the case for Kyler," Prescott wrote. "He had a lot of friends. The only real disrespect was from adults — and that was pretty severe, like referring to him as 'she,' even when it had been made very clear that he was a he. He had already had his name and gender changed legally, yet there were adults who were very disrespectful of his gender identity."

Prescott noted that it's also important for parents to "get on board with what their kid is telling them. They need to do their research, which is exactly what I did when Kyler came to me. The best outcomes are when these kids are fully embraced."

When Kyler died a few months ago, Prescott told ABC News that it crushed Kyler whenever others referred to him as female.

"One issue that my son faced and a lot of other trans kids faced is being misgendered all the time. A lot of people around him had a hard time changing the pronouns they used, and he felt stabbed in the heart every time someone would say 'she,'" Prescott said. "It's really traumatic to keep getting called something you truly feel you're not. People keep saying it's hard to remember and you have to remind them, but it's really not that hard. Once someone has stated their preference for a pronoun, you just need to get behind them and let go of all your preconceived notions about genders."

Earlier this month, Jenner accepted the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the 2015 ESPYs and said during her speech that she can handle being mocked or questioned, but that young trans people don't deserve to be subjected to such hatred for who they are.

"If you want to call me names, make jokes, doubt my intentions, go ahead," she said. "Because the reality is, I can take it. But for the thousands of kids out there coming to terms with being true to who they are, they shouldn't have to take it."

 
In 90 Seconds, Caitlyn Jenner Sums up Many Struggles of the Tr...

In 90 seconds, Caitlyn Jenner sums up many struggles of the trans community...

Posted by ATTN: on Thursday, July 16, 2015